Secretarial: The Temp: Two faces are the perfect accessory

`The Temp', is published by Century/Arrow on 7 October, price pounds 5.99

THE FLOWER bill has come in and the shouting has started. Mandy has gone from desk to desk, saying: "Why did you send flowers to that bitch at Bride and Household Digest? You think Luis is going to pay for them after what she said about his spring collection? Are you mad?" Or: "Roses for Suzie Rhinestone, lilies for Mickey Mann! Can't you remember anything? Do I have to do everything around here myself?" Or: "Why are these dated two days after the show?" People are replying: "No, but I'm going to put it on the Pink and Plush account. She was raving about their see-through ra-ras on Tuesday and I thought I'd make sure." Or: "Sorry, Mandy. The roses were for Suzie's assistant, actually." And: "Those were the congratulations ones after the write-up in The Times. The after-show ones are here, look."

London Fashion Week may be over for you, if you ever cared, but in the PR world the mopping-up operation is in full swing. Fashion PRs are a breed apart - shallow, and so caught up in their own image they haven't noticed that pink hair and yellow Lycra really, really don't go with 45- year-old skin.

Mandy is on the phone now. "Jean-Claude?" she says, "Jean-Claude, darling, it's Mandy from Pookie Publicity. We met on Tuesday. Mmm. Wonderful, darling, simply wonderful. I couldn't get over how clever you'd been. Now, listen, my love, I was just wondering if you were happy with the job Vasella is doing for you. Well, I couldn't help but notice that she'd completely failed to keep the split crotch on the PVC hipsters out of the press. Well, I never criticise my colleagues. She's one of my best friends, but I can't help wondering if she's not doing a bit too much of the old, you know, darling," and she sniffs, pointedly.

Behind me, Leezy is on the phone to a journalist. "Of course we don't mind, darling. You have to say what you think, obviously. But Tricia was in floods for days and we wondered if maybe we could send you some of the new collection to try to change your mind. She's doing some wonderful handbags in leopard-print bamboo."

"You would?" asks Mandy, "Well, Jean-Claude, we'd be glad to help, sweetie. Not a word to Vasella, of course. Mwaah, mwaah," she blows kisses into the receiver; "missing you already." She hangs up then picks up an incoming call from the other side of the room. "Victor, darling! My favourite client! Oh, of course I wouldn't just say that. So how do you feel, my love? Aren't you proud of yourself? By far the best show of the season... I think I've already got you a profile in Vogue, darling. Vogue! Can you imagine?"

Leezy continues: "No, well, of course, you're one of my favourite writers, and we're always delighted by any support you give us..."

Mandy has gone all quiet and cold. "Oh, she did, did she? And you believed that? Well. Obviously I can't stop you, but I think you ought to know that not even God himself could have stopped the reviews you got for your pointless collection. Fashion? Bin-liners, more like!"

And with that, each hangs up, and the word "Bitch!" spits from their mouths like olive stones. "Bloody journalists," snarls Leezy, then, "Mands! What happened?"

"That bitch Vasella just poached Victor right out from under my nose! Rang him and suggested I wasn't doing my job properly, and he believed her!"

"The cheek!" Leezy cries. "Bitch," cries Mandy. And they both pick up the phone.

Arts and Entertainment
Call The Midwife: Miranda Hart as Chummy

tv Review: Miranda Hart and co deliver the festive goods

Arts and Entertainment
The cast of Downton Abbey in the 2014 Christmas special

tvReview: Older generation get hot under the collar this Christmas

Arts and Entertainment
Dapper Laughs found success through the video app Vine

comedy Erm...he seems to be back

Arts and Entertainment
Wolf (Nathan McMullen), Ian (Dan Starky), The Doctor (Peter Capaldi), Clara (Jenna Coleman), Santa Claus (Nick Frost) in the Doctor Who Christmas Special (BBC/Photographer: David Venni)

tvReview: No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

Arts and Entertainment
Bruce Forsyth and Tess Daly flanking 'Strictly' winners Flavia Cacace and Louis Smith

tv Gymnast Louis Smith triumphed in the Christmas special

PROMOTED VIDEO
Arts and Entertainment
Rhys says: 'I'm not playing it for laughs, but I have learnt that if you fall over on stage, people can enjoy that as much as an amazing guitar solo'
musicGruff Rhys on his rock odyssey, and the trouble with independence
Arts and Entertainment
Krysia and Daniel (Hand out press photograph provided by Sally Richardson)
How do today's composers answer the challenge of the classical giant?
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment

ebooks
News
Shenaz Treasurywala
film
News
tv
Arts and Entertainment
Jason Watkins as Christopher Jefferies
tv
Arts and Entertainment
Star Wars Director JJ Abrams: key character's names have been revealed
film
Arts and Entertainment
Pharrell Williams won two BBC Music Awards for Best Song and International Artist
music
Arts and Entertainment
Mark, Katie and Sanjay in The Apprentice boardroom
TV
Arts and Entertainment

Film The critics but sneer but these unfashionable festive films are our favourites

Arts and Entertainment
Frances O'Connor and James Nesbitt in 'The Missing'

TV We're so close to knowing what happened to Oliver Hughes, but a last-minute bluff crushes expectations

Arts and Entertainment
Joey Essex will be hitting the slopes for series two of The Jump

TV

Who is taking the plunge?
Arts and Entertainment
Katy Perry as an Ancient Egyptian princess in her latest music video for 'Dark Horse'

music
Arts and Entertainment
Dame Judi Dench, as M in Skyfall

film
Arts and Entertainment
Morrissey, 1988

TV
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    Aren’t you glad you didn’t say that? The worst wince-and-look-away quotes of the year

    Aren’t you glad you didn’t say that?

    The worst wince-and-look-away quotes of the year
    Hollande's vanity project is on a high-speed track to the middle of nowhere

    Vanity project on a high-speed track to nowhere

    France’s TGV network has become mired in controversy
    Sports Quiz of the Year

    Sports Quiz of the Year

    So, how closely were you paying attention during 2014?
    Alexander Armstrong on insulting Mary Berry, his love of 'Bargain Hunt', and life as a llama farmer

    Alexander Armstrong on insulting Mary Berry and his love of 'Bargain Hunt'

    From Armstrong and Miller to Pointless
    Sanchez helps Gunners hold on after Giroud's moment of madness

    Sanchez helps Gunners hold on

    Olivier Giroud's moment of madness nearly costs them
    A Christmas without hope: Fears grow in Gaza that the conflict with Israel will soon reignite

    Christmas without hope

    Gaza fears grow that conflict with Israel will soon reignite
    After 150 years, you can finally visit the grisliest museum in the country

    The 'Black Museum'

    After 150 years, you can finally visit Britain's grisliest museum
    No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

    No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

    Doctor Who Christmas Special TV review
    Chilly Christmas: Swimmers take festive dip for charity

    Chilly Christmas

    Swimmers dive into freezing British waters for charity
    Veterans' hostel 'overwhelmed by kindness' for festive dinner

    Homeless Veterans appeal

    In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
    Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

    'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

    Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
    Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

    Ed Balls interview

    'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
    He's behind you, dude!

    US stars in UK panto

    From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
    Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

    Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

    What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
    Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

    Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

    Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect